Effects of Water Pollution & SolutionsThe effects of water pollution strongly impact the balance of nature, which ultimately impacts all humans. Withproper care and consideration, many of the situations that cause water pollution can be stopped or decreased.Types of Water PollutionWithout getting too technical, water pollution is a result of various things, but usually leads back to these sources: Industry Agriculture HomesMan-made situations are typically the causes of water pollution. Often, it’s unintended and unknown that actionsare contributing to water pollution. Many times it’s the last thought on someone’s mind that their actions couldsignificantly impact the environment locally and beyond.Ways Water is PollutedIndustryThere are three main ways that industries contribute to water pollution. They pollute by disposing of wastedirectly into waterways, emitting toxic gases that cause acid rain and changing the temperature of water with theirdisposals into waterways.
Direct disposal of waste into natural waterways causes waste to build up within the water. A pungent odor is the result. Additionally, this waste decreases the amount of oxygen in water, causing the death of aquatic animals or other organisms. The emission of toxic fumes into the air causes acid rain. When the acid rain falls, it contaminates local natural waterways including streams, rivers and lakes. This causes the death of many aquatic animals. Other animals drinking the water may become ill and die, too. Thermal pollution occurs when water used to cool hot machinery is released into waterways and the temperature of the water is drastically increased. This temperature change may cause aquatic life to die and numbers to be reduced. Additionally, such a temperature increase decreases the amount of oxygen in water, causing more of a chance of death to organisms.AgricultureIt’s common for farmers to use fertilizers and other chemicals on their crops to help them grow. However, thesechemicals and nutrients added to the soil can soak into the underground water supplies. Additionally, when itrains, these chemicals join the run-off water and flow into streams, rivers and lakes, thus polluting them. Evenjust the sediments of dirt, without any chemicals, are pollutants in the fact that they cause the waterways tobecome cloudy and muddy.HomesHouseholds are a leading cause of water pollution by the trash they create. Even if taken to landfills, often thistrash finds its way to natural waterways. Human waste, disposed of typically by sewers, pollute water. Any time aseptic system is not installed properly or bursts beneath the ground, the underground water supply may bepolluted. Oils and anti-freeze leaked from vehicles pollute water.Effects of Water PollutionThere are various effects of water pollution. Spread of disease: Drinking polluted water can cause cholera or typhoid infections, along with diarrhea. Affects body organs: The consumption of highly contaminated water can cause injury to the heart and kidneys. Harms the food chain: Toxins within water can harm aquatic organisms, thus breaking a link in the food chain. Causes algae in water: Urea, animal manure and vegetable peelings are food for algae. Algae grow according to how much waste is in a water source. Bacteria feed off the algae, decreasing the amount of oxygen in the water. The decreased oxygen causes harm to other organisms living in the water. Flooding: The erosion of soil into waterways causes flooding, especially with heavy rainfall. Harms animals: Birds that get into oil-contaminated water die from exposure to cold water and air due to feather damage. Other animals are affected when they eat dead fish in contaminated streams.The effects of water pollution are not always immediate. They are not always seen at the point of contamination.They are sometimes never known by the person responsible for the pollution. However, water pollution has ahuge impact on our lives. With knowledge, consideration and preparation, water pollution can be decreased. Itdoesn’t take much effort — just a little thought.Water Pollution SolutionsWater pollution is growing daily around the world, but so are water pollution solutions. Find out what you can doto combat water pollution in your area.
Water PollutionWater covers more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface. While less than 3 percent of this water is drinkable, allof it is necessary for supporting life on Earth. Water pollution is one of the biggest threats to the environmenttoday.There are several types of water pollution ranging from sewage and fertilizers to soil erosion. The impact of waterpollution on aquatic life and land life can be devastating. Effects of water pollution can include: Overgrowth of algae and surface life, leading to loss of light and nutrients to deep aquatic life Suffocation of aquatic life through sediment and loss of water depth Disruption of the food chain Spread of water-borne illnesses such as dysentery or typhoidWater Pollution SolutionsThe best solution for water pollution is prevention. While pollution that has already occurred is a current threat toall life on Earth, attempts to clean it up may cause even more harm.Chemicals used to treat or clean up oil spills may further contaminate water supplies. Adjustments in temperatureto counteract heat or cooling pollution may not achieve proper balance, leading to more loss of aquatic life.Preventing water pollution does more for the environment by halting the level of pollutants where they are.This gives the environment needed time to begin to correct itself, and time for scientists to determine the bestway to combat existing problems.Water Pollution PreventionsThere are several steps that can be taken to help prevent water pollution from getting worse.Conserve Soil
Erosion is one of the biggest causes of water pollution today. When you take steps to conserve soil, you are alsoconserving water and water life. Planting vegetative covers, strict erosion management and implementingbeneficial farming methods are just a few of the many possible approaches to soil conservation.Dispose of Toxic Chemicals ProperlyIt’s always a good idea to use lower VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) products in your home wheneverpossible. If you do use toxic chemicals, such as paints, stains or cleaning supplies, dispose of them properly.Paints can be recycled and oils can be reused after treatment. Proper disposal keeps these substances out ofstorm drains, water ways and septic tanks.Keep Machinery in Good Working OrderOil is one of the largest polluters of water in the world. It’s estimated that just the transportation of oil isresponsible for .0001 percent of oil contamination in water. Take steps to ensure you aren’t adding to thisproblem by repairing oil leaks in cars and machinery as soon as they are spotted. Clean up the residue anddispose of the used oils properly.Clean Up Beaches and WaterwaysJust picking up waste and litter wherever it is spotted can go a long way to keeping debris and pollutants out ofthe water. Do your part by taking your own trash, other wastes and any you see to a nearby disposal facility.Avoid Plastics When PossiblePlastic bags in the ocean is a well documented water pollutant. Keep this problem from getting worse bychanging to reusable grocery bags whenever possible.Get Active and Get InvolvedIs there a company near your home that releases heat, coolants or chemicals into a nearby waterway? You canget involved. Contact the EPA, local authorities or write letters to the heads of companies. Spreading anawareness of problems is a big first step toward combating them.While water pollution solutions may seem like too little, too late when viewed in the light of major oil spills andfloating plastic bag islands they are necessary to prevent these problems from growing worse. Simply slowingdown the rate of pollution can give the environment and scientists time to find long-term solutions to the very realproblems of water pollution. If you do your part to prevent pollution in your area, then you’ll be helping to protectaquatic life.